Thank you to Berkley Pub for the digital ARC of He Started It by Samantha Downing, in exchange for an honest review!
I was a huge fan of My Lovely Wife and it topped my favorites list last year. Downing has a way with writing psychological thrillers with depraved characters who are so unlikable, yet make you want to keep reading. He Started It is a road trip from hell with siblings who are each crazier than the next. Beth, Eddie, and Portia's grandfather passed away and is leaving them with an incredible inheritance (think upwards of $8,000,000!) The only hitch? They have to recreate a road trip they took with him as children. Seems easy enough, but what begins as an innocent cross country road trip turns more complicated, even deadly.
Beth narrates the story and the reader quickly uncovers that she is not all that she appears to be. Beth's unhinged personality begins to reveal itself as the story progresses and bits and pieces of the original road trip unveil themselves. He Started It is a combination of a psychological thriller and character study that was surprisingly unpredictable for me. For most of the book, I had no idea what was going on. When pieces started to fall into place towards the end, it all made more sense, but I am still left with some unresolved feelings and unanswered questions.
Bottom line, I wanted to like this one more than I did. I had high expectations after coming off of My Lovely Wife last year. I flat out loved that crazy book. This one though, left me confused and underwhelmed. I have read reviews on both sides of the spectrum, so do not let my opinion dissuade you. I think this one is great for someone new to the psychological genre because I guarantee you will be surprised and find the twists unpredictable. There were several things that occurred that seemed disjointed for me and I think flushing out the characters back stories more would have helped.
As always, these are my opinions and what was a swing and a miss for me, might be a home run for you.